Trial postponed for Winnebago man accused of killing fiancé

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The murder trial for a Winnebago man accused of killing his fiancé last year on the Winnebago Indian Reservation in northeastern Nebraska has been postponed until mid-summer.

Jonathan Rooney’s federal trial, which had been scheduled to begin May 10 in Omaha, has been pushed to Aug. 16 on a defense attorney’s request, the Sioux City Journal reported.

Rooney, 26, of Winnebago, is charged in U.S. District Court with second-degree murder and tampering with documents or proceedings in the killing of Kozee Decorah, 22, of Winnebago.

Officers responding to a call for help from Decorah on May 16 found her burning remains in a fire outside a reservation cabin. Decorah had told officers that she, Rooney and their infant son had gotten stuck on a muddy road. Rooney was found sleeping in the cabin with the couple’s 4-month-old son.

Rooney told investigators he and Decorah had argued and that she had hit him with something before he pushed her out of the cabin, locked the door and fell asleep. He didn’t wake up, he said, until officers entered the cabin and roused him.

Rooney faces up to life in prison if he’s convicted of the charges.

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